Preclinical evaluation of the effects on the gastrointestinal tract of the antineoplastic drug vincristine repeatedly administered to rats
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L. López_Gómez S. Díaz_Ruano R. Girón A. E. López_Pérez G. Vera E. Herradón Pliego V. López_Miranda K. Nurgali M. I. Martín_Fontelles J. A. Uranga R. Abalo

Área de Histología Humana y Anatomía Patológica, Departamento de Ciencias Básicas de la Salud, Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Alcorcón, Spain

Neurogastroenterology & Motility

Background Vincristine is a commonly used chemotherapeutic agent. It is associated with undesirable digestive side effects. However, the impact of vincristine on gastrointestinal structure and motility or its long_term effects have not been deeply studied in animal models. This could be useful in order to develop therapeutic or preventive strategies for cancer patients. The aim of this study was to analyze such effects.
Methods Rats received saline or vincristine (0.1 mg kg_1, ip) daily for 10 days. Evaluations were performed during treatment and 2_6 weeks after. Somatic mechano_sensitivity was assessed using von Frey hairs. Gastrointestinal motor function was studied by means of radiographic still images and colonic propulsion of fecal pellets using fluoroscopy videos. Histological assessment of the gut morphology and immunohistochemistry for HuC/D and nNOS were performed in whole_mount myenteric plexus preparations.
Key Results Peripheral sensitivity was increased in animals treated with vincristine and did not subside 2 weeks after treatment finalization. Vincristine treatment inhibited gastrointestinal motility although this was recovered to normal values with time. Damage in the digestive wall after vincristine treatment was greater in the ileum than in the colon. Villi shortening (in ileum) and large inflammatory nodules still remained 2 weeks after treatment finalization. Finally, the proportion of nNOS_immunoreactive neurons was increased with vincristine and continued to be increased 2 weeks after treatment finalization.
Conclusions and Inferences Vincristine alters gastrointestinal motility, peripheral sensitivity and mucosal architecture. Vincristine_induced neuropathy (somatic and enteric), intestinal mucosa damage and inflammatory infiltrations are relatively long_lasting.

BIOSEB Instruments Used:
Von Frey Filaments (Bio-VF-M)

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